Category Archives: Archives

Would You Like to See Samoa?

It is spring break for some this week, but it definitely doesn’t feel like sunshine and Mai Tais today in Philadelphia. For those of us stuck at our desks, here is a short clip from our archival film collection to get you dancing and thinking of vacation! Shot in 1940, this travelogue film documents the […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: Baby

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I’ve recently returned back to the museum after having taken some time off for paternity leave (thanks to Tom Stanley for covering for me while I was gone). I’m back, but my baby is still on my mind. In honor of him, this week’s photo is of a Umatilla baby. The Umatilla people inhabited around […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: The Great Pi-ramid?

General view of the pyramids.

A quick note: On most Fridays,  Archivist Eric Schnittke posts cool and interesting photos from the Penn Museum Archives here on our blog. I’m happy to say that Eric is at home with his wife Maureen and their brand new baby, Cormac Xavier, who was born just this past Monday. We at the Museum congratulate […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: Russia

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I absolutely love the Olympics. Winter or summer, I tune in every night to watch the amazing feats of athleticism. I figure, what better way to honor the Olympics than having this week’s photo of the week be from Russia. This photo from Golchikha, Siberia, Russia was taken by Henry Usher Hall between 1914 and 1915. […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: Dancers

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Working in an archives has its definite perks. One of those perks is working with the collections. Here at the Penn Museum, I particularly enjoy working with the photographic collections (hence my weekly blog contribution). This week, we had a Penn class in and the archivists were pulling images for them to view. I had […]

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Ur Digitization Project: January 2014

Legrain Photo of the site of Palmyra in Syria, 1926.

Personal Records, 1926 Continued Spotlight on Legrain’s travels through his Letters and photos We have now completed scanning the curatorial records of Father León Legrain, or at least those that most directly concern the ancient city of Ur. I have now read through many of them, particularly those sent to Penn Museum director George Gordon, […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: Dreaming of Warm Weather

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Philadelphia is cold. We were just hit with a snow storm, temperatures aren’t supposed to be above freezing for another week, and the thought of waiting outside for SEPTA just fills one with dread. Let’s think some better thoughts: warm sun, beaches, swimming in the ocean. This week’s photo of the week lends itself perfectly […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: Bicycles, Horses, and a Golf Club

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The excavations at Nippur, Iraq are some of the University of Pennsylvania Museum’s most well known explorations. The seasons at Nippur resulted in numerous important artifacts and a plethora of new data and knowledge. Very serious work, however, calls for very serious party time. This week’s photo captures some downtime somewhere between 1899 and 1900. […]

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Archives Photo of the Week: Hi!

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This week’s image is an illustration by Alfred Bendiner, a Philadelphia cartoonist. He received his Bachelor and Master of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania. Later in his career, Bendiner served as an artist-architect for the Museum’s archaeological expeditions to Tepe Gawra and Khafajeh in Iraq in 1936 and to Tikal in Guatemala in 1960. His […]

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Contests of will between “task master” director Gordon and his artist M.L. Baker

M. Louise Baker painting the "Luna" Vase (Chama, Maya), Guatemala City, 1931. Museum image #176327

University Museum artist (1908-1936) M. Louise Baker, acclaimed for her archaeological illustration of Mayan pottery and Nubian and Ur excavation finds, considered Museum Director Dr. George Byron Gordon to be “a hard task master but a good boss, appreciative and withal, most likable.” However, Gordon had a well-deserved reputation for being tight with money, except […]

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